Local schools encourage students to try out STEM-based careers and activities


WEST DES MOINES, Iowa — Monday marks national STEM Day, a day to celebrate careers in science, technology, engineering, and math.

Engineering teacher and robotics director at Valley High in West Des Moines, Dean Lange said they have seen and will continue to see great success in their students who go on to pursue careers in the field.

“So with our STEM-based careers. Our kids are going off to four-year degrees, and they do extremely well straight out of college. The placement rate is extremely high. The salaries are extremely good,” said Lange.

By the time 2029 hits, the number of STEM jobs will have grown by around 8% a much higher rate than non-STEM jobs according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Local schools are not the only factor in helping young Iowans reach their STEM goals.

Many students are mentored in the community. Like Clayton Davis who spent his high school days in the robotics club at Valley High and is now a third-year civil engineering student at Iowa State.

“I had an internship this year with Bishop Engineering in Urbandale, and that’s a land surveying group. I enjoyed it very much. And I did use all of my skills that I learned in robotics,” said Davis.

If someone may be interested in STEM it’s very likely that their school will have a program or class they can take to explore more. Students and parents are encouraged to ask questions about the careers and classes within the field.

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